Thursday, May 13, 2010

Reasons Dodgers will not win the West - part deux

Thursday May 13, 2010 

 Reasons the Dodgers will not win the NL West part deux

The Dodgers have gone 7-3 in their last 10 games and have been playing well. Manny just came off the DL. Ethier is in the lead in all Triple Crown categories. So maybe some of you are thinking that the Dodgers poor play to begin the year was an aberration. That they are on a winning streak and will soon take the NL West lead back.

As Web would say - Braaaaaaak! Sorry wrong answer. Please Play again.
(Yes. The guy did watch way too many game shows while on the road.)

The very fact that the Dodgers have key offensive players doing so much better than they have in any other season is more of a reason to believe that those players will slump towards their career averages and then the Dodgers will not be able to sustain their current winning ways.
  1. Ethier's line - .390/.446/.729/1.175 with 10 hr in 31 games with a BABIP of .391 & an ISO of .339. Look for Ethier's BABIP to drop 60-100 points before seasons end and along with it his batting average, OBP and OPS.  His career ISO is .207 and his best season so far was last year with a .237 ISO and 31 hr, so look for his power numbers to drop drastically as well.
  2.  Manny's line - .396/.507/.585/1.085 in 17 games with a BABIP of .380 Manny WILL hit .300-.330 for the season, but his batting average will drop 60 - 90 points along with a big drop in his OBP and OPS.

    Wait for it...the list of overachieving players on a losing team continues...
  3. Loney 's line - .326/.361/.474/.835 with a BABIP of .376. His power numbers are right on his career averages, but he has been lucky to the tune of 57 points. Even if this is a career year, his BA and OBP will drop 25-30 points. Its more likely we will see a 40+ point drop.

    Web would probably call this "regression towards the mean".
  4. The Pitching Staff is performing right now about the same pace we expected they would for the year. The noted exceptions are:
  • Kurodi will probably see a slight rise in his ERA. There have been a lot of errors committed behind him so his Earned Runs are down, but his Runs Allowed is at almost exactly the same rate we saw from him last season.
  • Billingsley will likely have a 30 point drop in his 4.85 ERA to closer to his 4.56 xFIP. Still not good pitching from the guy that was supposed to be an ace.
Replacing Randy Wolf and Jon Garland with Vicente Padilla and Charlie Haeger was a failed experiment early. John Ely has pitched well, but when/if Padilla returns what you have seen this season is the real Padilla. Its what the Rangers saw from him in 2007, 2008 and 2009.  The Dodgers have shown they really don't have much depth of pitching.

Other than Sherrill, no one in the pen is doing substantially worse than most people were expecting from them, especially the relievers whose arms were tasked with and taxed by 70 appearances last season.

What does that all end up to mean? The Dodgers current 8-3 win streak is not sustainable. .500 is a good goal for them to shoot for over the course of the season. If the Padres are going to be caught in the NL West, its not going to be by the Dodgers.

- Vic Power

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